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Interior construction has begun on a fresh food-focused grocery store adjacent to the University of Wisconsin-Madison campus, with a Jan. 15 target grand-opening date.
The new 18,000-square-foot Fresh Madison Market, which will located in the University Square complex at the corner of West Lake Street and University Avenue, will emphasize fresh produce, meat, seafood, bakery and deli alongside a full grocery department that will play up organics and natural products. Pending approval from city council, the store will also sell a limited amount of wine and beer.
Owner/operator Jeff Maurer, former president of Baraboo, Wis.-based Pierce’s Super Market chain, was quoted in the Wisconsin State Journal as saying, “We really want to dedicate as much space as we can to food offerings.” He anticipates hiring 60 to 70 people, 15 of whom will be full-time.
The University Square complex consists of a 12-story development that includes a 359-unit apartment building, offices, the UW-Madison Student Services Tower, and a Walgreens. Maurer’s new grocery store will mainly be on the ground floor of the complex, according to the newspaper, but 2,000 square feet on the second floor will include the kitchen where the store’s fresh foods will be prepared.
The store will also have 60 underground parking spots that will be free for the first half-hour of a shopper’s visit, although Maurer said he expects the bulk of business to be derived from pedestrians. “We’re hoping customers visit us several times a week for what they need that particular day,” vs. a more traditional grocery store where shoppers might make one or two visits per week